One University Avenue, completed in 1986 as Metropolitan Place, is one of the few distinguished towers from that period. Working within the late-modern idiom and typical developer constraints, the Toronto firm of Brisbin Brook Beynon created an inventive, well-crafted building and an engaging urban realm at one of the city’s primary gateways.
One University is notable first for its response to its site, a small but prominent triangle of land adjacent to the limestone monoliths of Union Station and the Royal York Hotel. The 19-story tower’s massing follows the triangular site, its vertical ziggurat profile progressively staggered inward to form a blunt prow overlooking Front Street. Structural modules are articulated as individual units, the edges elegantly chamfered, and are wrapped in a sleek blue-green glass membrane that effectively de-materializes the tower’s bulk.
Photo captured September 29, 2017.
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